We had building regs in when building a dormer to accommodate a bathroom. Unfortunately, they failed to tell us that the door frame was positioned in the wrong place (at the top of the stairs) during the build, even though it was obvious where the door would eventually be positoned. Frame was in place along with plasterboard either side, bathroom floor and bath panel had been tiled and the extractor fan except front plate was in position. When we asked them to visit for the final time we were told that the door and frame would need to be repositioned, therefore the extractor fan was no longer in the bathroom. Apart from ruining the final look of the bathroom, it's going to cost us Â£100s to put their mistake right. We also feel that there's an argument to be made that if we do move the door, there's a greater chance of not being able to gain access if someone should collapse on the floor! Does anyone know where we stand on this?
I will presume that the door is at the head of the stair and the stair does not therefore have a landing that equal in length to the width of the stair?
The first issue is whether the application to the building control department was a building notice or full plans.
If it was a building notice the plans are not checked although if as you say it was obvious then you may have a case using the LA ombudsman. This would be long winded, but you may if maladministration of the regualtions can be proved receive a sum towrds the alterations.
If the application was a full plans application and the plans clearly indicated that the door was at the head of the stair then you are legally allowed to build to the appproved plans. The council would be liable for any alterations that they request to achieve compliance.
Check your application and speak to the building control manager or team leader. Many council's in this situation will then reassess the compliance issue as the approved documents are only guidance, and they may then consider the stair 'to be safe to use' which is essentially the requiremetns of the regulations. This may depend of the number/type of room served by the stair. Does it only serve the bathroom?
Please remember mistakes happen, and the building control department only want a safe/compliant solution!
Thanks for the info.
Yes, the stairs are for access to the bathroom only. It was a full plan application, but between us, the builder and building regs man we decided that the size of the bathroom would benefit more by moving the stairs therefore, losing the landing at the bottom of the stairs.
I've been trying my upmost to do everything by the book, that's why its frustrating to now be in this position.
HAD SIMILAR PROBLEM WITH WINDING STAIR.. PLANNING HAD DICTATED THE GOING AND RISES, AND WE ENDED UP WITH THE TOP STEP BEING ANGLED... ON DAY OF INSPECTION THEY STATED THAT IT WAS UNSATISFACTORY. BUT WHEN CHALLENGED THEY COULD NOT FIND ANY BUILDING REGULATION OR OTHER LAID DOWN DIRECTIVE TO OPPOSE IT, SO IT REMAINS TO THIS DAY. :P